By Betsy R.
Submitted: November 2002
Summary: Poor Clark. He's having some personal… frustrations on Christmas Eve. Can Lois help him work through them? A very short, WAFFy vignette.
Christmas Traditions: A short short
Disclaimer: I don't own, I just play
Spoilers: Sometime after season 4
Notes: I wrote this as a challenge to myself, as I am stuck in writers' block land with my re-write of the monstrosity otherwise known as Gone in a Flash. It was finished in half an hour, and was fun to write <eg>. I suppose this concept has been done before, but I don't recall reading it, and no idea skimming was meant. This really did come out of my head.
She approached him quietly from across the room. The lights from the newly-decorated tree shone softly — the only light in the room. Still, she could see the tense set to his back as he sat quietly.
"Clark, I know you're upset. Can't we talk about it?"
Turning his head from his stoic reflection of the cold Metropolis night, Clark looked up, embarrassed, into Lois's eye.
"I'm just so… frustrated. I've never felt so inadequate." Letting out a large sigh, he shook his head and lowered it to his hands.
Lois sat softly next to him, placing an arm around his tense back. She leaned her head into his bowed one. The window seat in their family room was cold, especially in her current state of semi-undress, but her Clark was always her warmth.
"Honey, don't you think you're taking on too much yourself? Yes, you're Superman. But that doesn't mean you can do everything. Sometimes, even you get tired. You been so busy this afternoon — so many rescues and all the decorating… We'll just go to sleep and tomorrow morning everything will work fine. You'll see."
He turned his pleading eyes to hers.
"But Lois, I've always been able to… can't you see? It's like a tradition. I don't want to mess that up! And it's Christmas Eve. This is such a special time, one of the most important times for us to be able to share experiences like this. And to not be able to…"
Lois was beginning to lose her patience. When he got into these ruts, it was almost impossible to pull him out. And it wasn't the end of the world. But understanding the way men were about these things, she tried one more time to make peace with him.
"Clark… everyone has troubles like this sometimes. Sometimes things don't work just the way they're supposed to right off. Give it a rest… tomorrow we'll try again, ok?"
They'd done it before, they'd do it again. She had every confidence in that. But Clark just mutely shook his head, frustration, sorrow, and anger all in his eyes.
Lois decided that pity was getting her nowhere. "Clark, for God's sake! It's just a toy train! I mean, I know it's important for you to get it running for Christmas, and we will. Maybe one of the connections is loose or something? We'll fix it tomorrow. Come to bed, honey. Please?" Her voice melted suddenly from a short reprimand to a soft purr. "Besides, there are other traditions we need to attend to. Unless, of course, you're not in the mood…"
That wrangled a smile from Clark. "Well, some traditions are more important than others, I suppose." He rose slowly, pulling her with him into a warm embrace. Picking up the star ornament, he levitated them both to the top of the tree; where together they placed the star he had gotten for her so many years before.
"Merry Christmas, Honey," he whispered softly and leaned down to her. Taking his time, he inhaled her soft scent before placing a tender kiss on her cheek, then another on her neck. Finally, after pulling back and smiling tenderly at her, he cupped her cheek in that way only he could and kissed her fully.
And, to Lois's mind, that was the only Christmas tradition she ever needed.
Begun & finished 14-Nov-02